Airline Terrorism Before 9/11 and Today

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This paper describes our nation and the worlds mindset about airline terrorism before 9/11 and airline terrorism today. This remains a very real and deadly subject even though we don’t have as many incidents occurring at this moment in time. Still the potential for countless lives being lost in an aircraft accident from the actions of a terrorist or terrorist organization is still very real and innocent families across this nation and abroad remain the targets. Additionally, it will show that the security measures in place at airports prior to 9/11 were far less adequate, than today, and personnel responsible for airport security at the gates and throughout were either poorly trained or not trained at all when it came to hijackers and terrorist. This paper will also identify the extensive security measures, rules and training that have been put into place, which helped to curtail acts of terrorism onboard airliners. Introduction Whether we would like to admit it or not there was a time, prior to September 11, 2001 when airline terrorism was a very real danger and it seemed as thought we averaged a hijacking or terrorist event every thirty days somewhere in the world. Gladly this wasn’t the case, in an online article I read there was a interview held with a person who spoke to my thoughts, he said “One example was a study I conducted on media coverage by the New York Times during a 17 -year, pre-9/11 period of 1978 to 1994. Among other things, I found that fatal airline events that involved jet aircraft that were hijacked, sabotaged, or destroyed by military action, which represented about 8% of the fatal airline accidents reported by the Times during that period, accounted for about 48% of all the airline accident articles in that period“ (T. Curtis, personal interview, September 11, 2009). Back then, it was easy to visualize a small suitcase being carried aboard an aircraft with a explosive inside, capable of ending the lives of everyone onboard men, women, and children; with no regard to age, sex, and religion. The media coverage seemed to focus on the individual hijacker because somehow it seemed as though we knew who he was and where he came from. Sometimes it seemed as though we knew why and most cases we did because that was their plan; they wanted the attention so they can give their list of demands.
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